HAMPSHIRE’s most controversial phone mast has been removed.

Contractors have taken down the Orange mast in Byron Avenue, Winchester, ending 13 years of argument and debate.

Residents battled the mast for more than four years, with marches, vigils and legal action, until it was erected in July 2005.

Now technology has moved on and the mast is no longer needed.

Daily Echo:

GONE: The controversial mast

Leading campaigner Karen Barratt, of Byron Avenue, said: “The demolition squad took us all by surprise as we’ve been trying to get the mast taken away for over a year.

“At least unlike the day it was erected we didn’t have hoards of police to contend with.

“I just wish my husband, Mike, who put so much into the campaign, had lived to see this day. It was ironic that they chose the August bank holiday weekend to take it down as it’s the third anniversary of his death.”